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News & Trends - Pharmaceuticals

Department of Health moves to approve HTA terms of reference and engage HTA expert

Health Industry Hub | March 10, 2023 |

Pharma News: The Health Technology Assessment (HTA) Review Reference Committee, with Independent Chair Adjunct Professor Debora Picone, met recently to provide briefings on the National Medicines Policy (NMP), consumer engagement work and next steps in the Review.

Professor Michael Kidd AM highlighted the importance of the new NMP, published in December 2022, as a reference document for policy development, consumer advocacy and ongoing professional development for people across the medicines sector. Professor Kidd outlined the key revisions to the NMP which included stronger focus on person-centredness, innovation, adaptability to future health needs and continuous improvement.

The Committee also invited Jo Watson, Chair of the HTA Consumer Consultative Committee (CCC) and Dr Sally Wortley, lead of the Consumer Evidence and Engagement Unit (CEEU) to provide a briefing on consumer engagement work undertaken by the CCC and CEEU.

The Committee was advised that the CEEU is currently conducting a series of consultations called Conversations for Change to understand how to improve the inclusion of, and communication to and by, consumers and carers in HTA.

The input received indicated a desire for earlier and more active participation of consumers in the process, greater clarity around partnerships and better support and stronger communication. The Committee was advised that further discussions were planned with other groups and stakeholders. The
Committee considered it would be beneficial to continue to liaise with HTA CCC and CEEU and to seek support during consultations to inform the Committee of key HTA issues for consumers.

The Committee reviewed revisions made to the terms of reference based on feedback received from stakeholders.

A work plan is being developed with the aim to publish details around the same time as the publication of the terms of reference. The work plan will detail consultations and timing of documents to be prepared by the HTA Expert.

The Committee has now endorsed the terms of reference and submitted it for government approval. Also, as the scope of work to be undertaken by the HTA expert has been agreed upon, the Department has commenced processes to engage the HTA expert.

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